Posts Tagged ‘SFMTA’

AUDIT: Hapless SFMTA Agrees to Try to Have Its Employees Steal Fewer Cable Car Cash Fares

Monday, July 31st, 2017

The results are IN from our Controller’s SFMTA Cable Car Cash Collections Audit 07.31.2017.

Turns out that what we pretty much knew is what we pretty much knew. Here’s the upshot:

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So a few SFMTA stoolies will hear the phrase, “Pepper, you’re going undercover,” and then they’ll act like tourists to see if they’ll be given a receipt for a cash fare.

Not too long ago we had a San Francisco Mayor going undercover, hiding his trademark hair product under a baseball cap and then getting steamed when he wasn’t given a receipt.

And more recently, we’ve had stuff like:

Cable cars may go cashless after second conductor arrested for allegedly stealing fares by  on April 26, 2017

The SFMTA could do more, but it doesn’t really feel like it AFAICS.

This whole situation is pretty much what you’d expect.

But read this short report – you paid for it, after all.

Why It’s Completely Absurd for the SFMTA to Claim that Carshare Car Rental Means “60,000 Fewer Vehicles on the Street”

Monday, July 31st, 2017

Here it is, from Hoodline:

“Data also showed that 17% of members got rid of their cars after joining a car-sharing company, with as many as 24,000 vehicles sold. When taking into account people who did not purchase cars because of car-sharing, there were as many as 60,000 fewer vehicles on the street.”

Well let’s call horse-shit on this.

So, when did “car-sharing” get started in Frisco – over the past half-decade? So here are the latest stats for AUTOS registered in San Francisco County, per the DMV.

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2011: 380,621
2012: 385,442
2013: 397,238
2014: 403,246
2015: 407,656
2016: 413,147

Do you see a trend here? Do you see registered vehicles going up by about 6000-something cars per year, year in and year out? That’s the trend lately, for whatever reason.

So where’s the supposed “60,000 fewer vehicles” kicking in from the SFMTA’s inconsequential program? Does the SFMTA really think we’d have 473,000 registered cars but for its heroic car “share” car rental program?

Obviously, our SFMTA really doesn’t know what’s it’s doing. So why not have an independent agency assess how effective its policies are instead of this, this Pyongyang-inspired Ministry of Truth stuff coming from SFMTA spokesmodels who are obviously just winging it day by day, DJT-style.

You know, what I’m talking about is having somebody around saying, “Is this really true?”

Or, in the case of attaining the goal of VisionZero 2024, which will somehow, by administrative decree, eliminate all transportation mishap injuries by 2024 and through eternity, “Could this possibly be true?”

These Poor Women Have NO IDEA Their FORD GOBIKE Joyride to Sausalito Will Cost Them MORE THAN $100

Thursday, July 27th, 2017

Ford GoBike: The Bay Area’s bike share program, named for Henry Ford.

Motivate International, formerly Alta Bicycle Share, famous for labor issues.

Anti-competitive agreement with SFGov.

Burdensome SFMTA STATIONLESS BIKESHARE PROGRAM PERMIT APPLICATION.

Clumsy efforts in the Mission District, suspicion over Ford Motor Company’s FordPass

This is so sad. Here’s what tourists see when they’re thinking about renting a FORD-branded rental bike in Frisco:

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So, one trip is $3 and you can rent a bike for all day for just $10. Of course there’s more in there, stuff about how you have to check your bike back in within 30 minutes or you get hit with late fees, but the tourists don’t see that part.

How do I know this?

  1. Well, check Yelp. That litany is for the service what ended last month, the not-much-used and taxpayer-funded Bay Area Bike Share, but the successor service, the taxpayer and Ford Marketing-funded Ford GoBike joint, gets the same complaints. See below.
  2. Also I’ve asked people when I’ve seen them in / going to Sausalito. A man in one group said that they were paying $10 per 24 hours and a woman in this pair, as seen on the Golden Gate Bridge, said they were getting their rentals for “$9 for the whole day.”

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But the real price for pedaling through Frisco,* over the bridge to Sausalito in Marin County and back again is $16 for the first hour and then $12 an hour after that. So if your trip takes five hours, which is totally possible, then you’re paying $64 per bike. Times two is $128. Minus the $20 they already knew about leaves us with $108 MORE THAN EXPECTED.

Of course less time = less money and more time, as you can read about on Yelp = more money.

Hey, are the people at Ford Motor Company, Motivate International, and/or SFMTA/SFGov aware of this issue?

YEP.

Now, do they give a care?

NOPE, apparently not.

Oh well. So if your goal is to market Ford Motor Company to youth and to get “more butts in bikes,” then having newcomers pedal two-wheeled advertising vehicles where other ads aren’t allowed (like on the GGB) is great. You’d want ALL of Frisco’s tourists to make the same mistake.

Now, isn’t it ironic, don’tcha think, that our SFMTA insists (in one line item on a grocery list longer than your arm) that any competitors to FORD MOTOR COMPANY GOBIKE properly make clear to users how much they have to pay, but the existing government-approved, government-funded (IDK, monopoly? or) entity isn’t doing that at all currently, and hasn’t done for the past few years as well?

PROPOSALS:

  1. Hey, why not change GoBike’s misleading language to something that tourists, you know, some of whom don’t have the best handle on English, can understand, like NON-misleading language?
  2. Hey, why not have a text message sent to users telling them that their time is up when their time is up and then say, OK, it’s $12 per hour starting now?

And I’ll tell you, I don’t like the phrase THREE DAY PASS that FoMoCo uses for its $20 option either, and here’s why. If Sarge gave Gomer Pyle…

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… a three-day pass to go off-base, would he have to come back to base every half-hour? I think not, Gentle Reader. I think not.

Anyway, that’s what I ponder when I see all those GB’s on the GGB.

Ah, the Yelp:

“I like the Bikes but the renting cost of the Bikes are very  expensive. There are 3 options to rent the bikes: Short-term pass 3 dollars for 30 minutes, the day pass $9.95, and 3 day pass $19.95. I picked 2 Bikes for the day pass for $9.95 each. I thought that was good price for a day and only rode 2 hours and 15 minutes and returned the Bikes. However, they charge me $73 that is super expensive. The tricky part is the Bikes only allowed for 30 minutes if u want to bike more than 30 minutes, you will pay $3 for extra 15 minutes. That is why I end up paying more than $70 2 Bikes for two hours.”

“FRAUD ALERT! I was so excited when I heard about this service that I went right to their website to sign up. However, what they state in bold print about costs and ride time on their website is not what you agree to in the fine print of your membership agreement. Coupled with the fact that a company that is engaging in shady (i.e. illegal) activities from the gate, now has your credit card number, a link to your specific clipper card, and an app on your phone all before you ever even get on a bike is, in my opinion–A BIG RED FLAG. READ THOSE ENDLESS PAGES SCROLLING DOWN YOUR SCREEN BEFORE YOU CHECK THE “AGREE”  BOX.”

“I’m never using this service again. The digital display on the payment machine said the one day pass was $9, but I paid $49 for a bike for three and a half hours. I could buy a bike with $49. It’s ridiculously expensive. Charging the extra fee over $9 seems to be a scam.They should change the marketing from one day pass to 30 MINUTES PASS!! $9 for the pass is right up to 30 minutes, but from the moment over 30 minutes, you have to pay the extra fee $7 per 30 minutes. Keep in mind. I wish other people would never go through the same situation as me. This service is the worst one I’ve ever gotten in SF.”

Yours, in struggle.

*That’s a long way already on these hefty bikes as the stations closest to the Golden Gate Bridge are FAR AWAY, currently.

[UPDATE: Oh, it used to be that Motivate International would offer people who misunderstood the pricing structure a 50% refund, but now I see that 100% seems to be the new standard.

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This is sort of funny since this has been a Known Issue for years (plural). END UPDATE]

Uh, I Don’t Think You Can Do This, SHIFT.com (AKA KPCB’s G2VP, DFJ, Highland Capital, DCM Ventures, Goldman Sachs)

Tuesday, July 25th, 2017

[UPDATE: Oh, I see, this is a 2015 Volvo what got sold by SHIFT to be used as a LYFT, it now appears. So it aint a new car and yet it doesn’t have its California plates. Maybe it was an out of state car? IDK. A mystery to me.]

[UPDATE II, Electric Boogaloo: Oh here it is, being sold in Pasadena a few years back? Is this it too? Confused, oh well.]

SHIFT (company).

This Volvo isn’t a new car. If it were a new car, then it’d be a 2018 model, right? Or a 2017? But it’s not. And it’s sitting on a public street without a license plate, except for SHIFT (and LYFT) badging, some of which is license plated-shaped of course, but you know, not a real license plate. Now if this were a new car, then things might make sense, but I think you’d need to have your reg in the window, non? You know, maybe there is reg in the front window – I didn’t check as I was rolling through this block, sry. But doesn’t Shift deal in used cars? Or maybe somebody stole the license plates. But why does SHIFT have license plate covers in the first place, one wonders.

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Don’t try this on your own ride, Gentle Readers.

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Anyway, this isn’t usual, so I thought I’d tell you.

Here’s How Ford Motor Company’s GoBike Bicycle Rental Scheme Moves Its Bikes Around: A BIG TRICYCLE

Tuesday, July 11th, 2017

Here’s the scene from the E’ville Eye News:

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At first I thought, wow, they must be using their burliest worker to push this trike trailer around, but then I saw the battery holder(?) beneath, for the electric assist, one assumes.

This is a better look than GoBike predecessor Bay Area Bike Share, which was known for its Mercedes trucks what would park wherever, like in the slow lanes of Market, for example:

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Or like this, also double-parking on Market:

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Or like this, halfway on Market and halfway on the sidewalk – IDK if this is considered better behavior or not:

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And sometimes all the way on the sidewalk. Again, IDK if that’s considered “better” than simply double parking.

And let’s not forget about BABS supes – they could park in the slow lane of inbound Market as well, because, IDK:

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And then with the illegal turns off of Market, like making a awkward left turn going inbound Market onto Sansome. Again, I don’t see how that could have been legal yet it was routine.

(Hey, QUESTION: Does Michigan-based FoMoCo think that $16.13 per hour really is at or above “living wages” in the bay area in places like Frisco, E-Ville, Oaktown, Berzerkeley, etc? Mmmm…)

Anyway, like I said, a bike trailer is a better look for Ford’s marketing division than a big truck…

Double Parking, Frisco-Style – What Happens When Our Sidewalks are WAY Too Wide

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017

As seen dans le quartier interieur De Richmond:

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You know, I don’t think I’ve ever called our SFMTA over bad parking – it would have to be a lot worse than this…

Captain America Minibike, Clement Street – A Much Cheaper Way of Getting Around Frisco Than Spending $100/Mo on SFMTA MUNI

Wednesday, July 5th, 2017

Good work, Soldier!

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Harder, better, cheaper, faster than MUNI is what I’m saying…

North of Panhandle Area REJECTS Losing Four Parking Spaces for a Ford Motor Company GoBike Station – And SFMTA is Cool With That

Tuesday, June 27th, 2017

I’ll tell you, I was unaware of this issue:

“To Hayes/Cole and Panhandle Residents: Thanks to all who signed our letter, telephoned, emailed and spoke at the SFMTA hearing on Friday 6/17/2016. SFMTA Senior Planner Heath Maddox confirms that they will NOT site a bike dock at Hayes and Cole Street. From his email:

‘…We (SFMTA) do not issue permits for bike share stations in front of buildings where the residents and/or property owners object. Motivate will need to find another spot in this grid square.”

Way to activate and organize and engage neighbors!!!”

So let’s see here, all this reminds me of:

  • The recent campaign to prevent Google buses (from the actual Google) from stopping at the #21 Hayes bus stops at Clayton;
  • The campaign to prevent Facebook buses from continuing to use a stop at Hayes and Masonic (so it got moved to Fell and Masonic, and of course, a ton of people along the three affected properties complained about that, but obvs not enough); und
  • The campaign (operated by minimum wage workers hired temporarily off of craigslist by an area coffee kingpin) to “save” one of two SFMTA bus stops on the same side of the same short block of inbound Hayes between Masonic and Central

I don’t exactly get this standard from SFMTA Senior Planner Heath Maddox – if people object to the SFMTA doing something, then it won’t do it? I don’t think that this is the actual standard IRL.

On the other hand, if you yammer enough at the SFMTA, it just might take away parking spaces from those who don’t know how to yammer as well, you now, those poor souls who live just a few blocks away.

Some would call this democracy.

THEORY: SFGov Responds to Problems Where It Can Make Money Faster Than Those Where It Can’t – Edleeville

Thursday, June 22nd, 2017

For example:

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Help is on the way, sort of:

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Scootpocalypse Now: Get Used to This in Your Favorite Parking Spot – (And Don’t Try This in the Sunset)

Wednesday, June 21st, 2017

Here’s the news:

Scoot cements permanent spot on SF streets – REPORTING FROM CITY HALL By Jerold Chinn SFBAY”

And here’s what’ll it look like:

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This kind of thing wasn’t allowed afore, but it is now.

I don’t know how many Scoots make it way out there to the Outer Sunset, but if you take up the parking space in front of a house, you know, “my space” as the homeowner thinks of it, well that’s bad enough if you do it with a car, but with a for-profit rental scooter, well, Katy Bar The Door.

You’ll see.